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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.
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12 Squadron Crest
10.05.1940 12 Squadron Fairey Battle I L5190 PH-P Plt.Off. Albert W. Matthews

Operation: Luxembourg

Date: May 10th 1940 (Friday)

Unit: 12 Squadron

Type: Fairey Battle Mk I

Serial: L5190

Code: PH-P

Base: RAF Amifontaine, Northern France

Location: Belly-landed near Kiem Kirchberg Luxemburg

Pilot: Plt.Off. Albert William Matthews 40003 RAF - injured PoW No: 1261 *

Nav: Sgt. A.A. Maderson RAF - injured PoW - confined in Hospital due injuries. Repatriated October 1943

Air Gnr: LAC. J.C. Senior RAF - injured PoW No: 5786 **

* Stalag Luft 3, Sagan-Silesia, Germany, now Żagań in Poland. (Moved to Nuremberg-Langwasser, Bavaria).

** Stalag Luft 6, Heydekrug, Memelland (now Šilutė in Lithuania).


Airborne at 17:15 hrs from RAF Amifontaine.

L5190 had orders to attack enemy troop columns reported between Luxembourg and Junglinster, 14 km NNE of Luxembourg. Shot down by small arms ground fire in the target area. Belly-landed near Kirchberg at 17:45 hrs.

Above and below L5190 being inspected by German troops.

Area of operations and loss

Above: Plt.Off. Albert Matthews; Left Image - First solo flight on June 14, 1937 in plane DH Tiger Moth 82 G-ADXP. Centre Image - In uniform standing in front of a Hawker Hart airplane with a 12 cylinder Rolls Royce Kestrel engine. (Courtesy: Greg McGrath)

Cutting from the Times Colonist (Victoria, British Columbia) - 18th January 1941. Plt.Off. Albert W. Matthews is 5th from the left. (Courtesy: Greg McGrath)

12 Squadron at the Amifontaine airbase, Northern France

The squadron lost 2 other aircraft during this operation, another was damaged but repaired:
L5249 Flown by 22 year old Plt.Off. Cecil Laing Hulse 70860 RAF - hit by ground fire - repaired but later abandoned. (Plt.Off. Hulse died in hospital on the 4th June 1940 of an illness not connected with operations)
P2243 Flown by Flt.Lt. Hunt - hit by ground fire, aircraft abandoned. All crew safe.
L4949 Flown by Flt.Lt. W. Simpson - hit by ground fire, crash landed. All crew safe.

Burial details:

None - all the crew survived the crash landing.

Researched by Michel Beckers for Aircrew Remembered, March 2015. Photographs courtesy of Michel Beckers. Thanks to Greg McGrath for the images and newspaper cutting for Plt.Off. Matthews and the PoW newspaper cutting.

RS 05.04.2020 - Addition of PoW image

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Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Stan D. Bishop, John A. Hey MBE, Gerrie Franken and Maco Cillessen - Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces, Vols 1-6, Dr. Theo E.W. Boiton - Nachtjagd Combat Archives, Vols 1-13. Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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